Just Be Nice To People, Part IV

Withhold not good from them to whom it is due, when it is in the power of thine hand to do it.  Say not unto thy neighbour, Go, and come again, and to morrow I will give; when thou hast it by thee.  Devise not evil against thy neighbour, seeing he dwelleth securely by thee.  Strive not with a man without cause, if he have done thee no harm.  Envy thou not the oppressor, and choose none of his ways.

Proverbs 3:27-31

We have been looking at this passage in Proverbs dealing with our daily relationships for a few days now.  If we could sum the whole passage up in one phrase, it might be “just be good to people,” or, as the title of these posts says, “just be nice to people.”  It sounds simple, but something as small as just being nice to people will make a huge difference in our lives and in our Christian lives.

Today’s verse tells us to “Strive not with a man without cause, if he have done thee no harm.”  That would seem to be a very basic tenet of life, but we need the basics repeated fairly often.  When I teach Algebra, I often tell my students that it usually isn’t Algebra mistakes that get people, it’s the two plus two equals five mistakes that get people.  It’s the same in our lives.  We can usually avoid messing up in the “big” areas, but it’s the little things that get us.

This verse tells us not to fight with people who haven’t done anything to us.  That’s simple.  But sometimes we just like to fight and argue.  Sometimes we find some perceived slight and use that to start an argument.  Sometimes we just get cantankerous and cranky.  Whatever the reason, if people don’t bother us, we shouldn’t bother them.  Leave people alone.  Just be nice to people.  It’s as simple as that.

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